Tag Archive: magical-realism



The Particular Sadness of Lemon CakeThe Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My friend, Michele, recommended this. I found the audio on Libby. The author, Aimee Bender, narrates, so you know the right emotions show through.

Synesthesia is the word that came to mind about Rose Edelstein. But this is far different from tasting color or smelling shapes. Tasting the chef’s mood or the affair her mother is having is a lot to believe. That her brother can disappear to another dimension or time is truly unfathomable.

The story is slow, but it made a good bedtime book. It had plenty for the imagination to work on.

I was disappointed that we didn’t see people using their talent for good. But maybe this is more realistic. But the ending was underwhelming.

Worth the read if only to explore a unique idea.

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The Light PirateThe Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Rosemary Benson’s narration gave this well-written story a deeper sense of credibility. I am so glad I got to listen to the Audible version of this book. Was it the author, Lily Brooks-Dalton, or the narrator that caused me to smell the world, feel the humidity, and stand strong in the wind blowing around me?

As tangible as the world seemed, the grief was palpable. Each stage of life has happy occurrences and endings. The book takes us through many lives and increases in ecological disasters, but we witness the good in the bad. The magic in the dull, difficult world.

The main character, Wanda, born during the hurricane in Florida that she was named after, grows up as severe weather changes take effect. She needs to survive. Her family and a good neighbor friend see her through as much as possible. Wanda grows anyway.

I feel I have made this sound very depressing. It is, in parts. But mostly shows us how we can survive if we pay attention. Not just to the warnings but to the world around us as it is adapting. I’m leaving this book behind with a promise I may read it again. It will haunt me. In a good way.

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Faerie Knitting: 14 Tales of Love and MagicFaerie Knitting: 14 Tales of Love and Magic by Alice Hoffman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a delightful bedtime book! Especially the Audible version with January LaVoy narrating. The stories are short enough to do one a night. Normally, I don’t like short stories. But after reading Braiding the Sweetgrass, this felt similar enough not to feel a shock but an excellent way to hear stories of love.

AND the book comes with knitting patterns—even the Audible. I picked up the PDFs and printed them to my knitting folders. I can’t wait to try some of these. Although, I think a few are way beyond my abilities. But the way knitting is woven into the stories is captivating. I’m sorry to be finished with the reading.

If you are unaware of Alice Hoffman, she is the author of Practical Magic, among many others. She writes with the pen of a poet. This particular book is co-authored with her sister. What fun that must have been.

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Anansi BoysAnansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

NARRATOR OF Anansi Boys

Lenny Henry, narrator made this one of the most fun books I’ve read (listened to) in a long time. There were so many quotes that I wanted to put into my blog. But that would be spoilers. Go to GoodReads and look them up once you’ve read this book. I would be doing my diamond painting and then suddenly I’d have to stop because I would be laughing out loud. I’d have to calm down before trying to place the little gem into the picture.

What can I say about Neil Gaiman that hasn’t been said? His writing and imagination is fantastic.

This is considered book 2 of the American Gods. But I don’t know if you need to read that first. I did read AG a bit ago and loved it, too. But it isn’t necessary to enjoy this shorty but goody. Okay, maybe it isn’t so short. But after the tomes of Outlander this was a nice break.

I only decided to read this because Whoopi Goldberg is going to star in the theatrical version. Now I can hardly wait to see it!

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Through the Magic SunglassesThrough the Magic Sunglasses by Mariia Manko
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book gives the phrase “looking at the world through rose-colored glasses” a whole new meaning.

I picked up this book for free on Kindle Unlimited because of the blurb. Okay. I’ll share it.

“When Mariia storms out of her boyfriend’s Kyiv apartment forever, she has no idea what is awaiting her. She is handed a pair of ‘magic’ sunglasses by a mysterious cabdriver on her way to Berlin, and what begins as a journey to get over her breakup turns out to be the adventure of her life. The sunglasses become her secret helper, always showing her an escape route as Mariia is chased by a trio of rich, vindictive women who want a compromising flash drive back from her, going from Berlin to Düsseldorf to Paris and then on to Abu Dhabi and Ras Al Khaimah.
Combining urban fiction and self-help with a dashing tale of adventure, Mariia Manko’s Through the Magic Sunglasses is an enchanting story about independence, strength, and believing in yourself.”

And yes, it was an adventure. But the most challenging part for me was how the main character couldn’t stop thinking about her ex and get on with the magic she had been given. I think that was the part that ruined it for me. The rest of the book was fun. And it was upbeat and a bit of a self-help book.

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Fortune FallsFortune Falls by Jenny Goebel
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What a fun book! Though aimed at middle grades to young adults, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

My friend and her granddaughter were co-reading this. They shared on a Zoom friends-meet how much they were enjoying it. I started looking around to see if it was on Libby. I couldn’t afford to buy it right now. Thankfully my friend gifted the Kindle version to me. Yay! And thank you!

Imagine a town where superstitions come true. Sadie lived there and was considered unlucky. What an adventure she takes us on while making us question those beliefs!

If you want to take a break from the adult reads, this will fit the bill. I am amazed at the vocabulary and writing. I believe young me or my kids would have enjoyed this even more than I did, which seems an impossible bar to reach!

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